“Confirmation perfects Baptismal grace; it is the sacrament which gives the Holy Spirit in order to root us more deeply in the divine filiation, incorporate us more firmly into Christ, strengthen our bond with the Church, associate us more closely with her mission, and help us bear witness to the Christian faith in words accompanied by deeds.”
—Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), 1316
The Sacrament of Confirmation is conferred on candidates from our parish on two regular times in the year. The parish Confirmation class of teens is usually confirmed in the Easter Season by a bishop of the Archdiocese; while Confirmation of adults in the RCIA class or private instruction class is celebrated at the Easter Vigil Mass. These are the two regular times for Confirmation; some others are also done.
To see the videos of our Faith Formation staff in the parish, click and meet the parish coordinators for Confirmation readiness programs. You will see who you will contact to direct your Confirmation program.
You can also make initial contact about Confirmation with the pastor by calling the parish office at 301-249-9199.
The Sacrament of Confirmation
Confirmation (or Chrismation) is the sacrament of the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit whom Christ Jesus sent (John 7:37-39, 16:7). Jesus instructed his Apostles that they "will receive the power of the Holy Spirit" and called upon the Apostles to be his "witnesses to the ends of the earth" (Acts 1:8).
At the Feast of Pentecost, in A.D. 33, the Church had her birthday. On that day the apostles were filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4), and began to spread the Word of God. The Acts of the Apostles is often called the Gospel of the Holy Spirit. St. Cyril of Jerusalem wrote of the Mysteries of Baptism, Eucharist, and Chrism in the mid-fourth century AD.
The rite of Confirmation is anointing the forehead with chrism, together with the laying on of the minister's hands and the words, "Be sealed with the Gift of the Holy Spirit." The recipient receives the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord (Isaiah 11:2-3). One may also receive other gifts of the Spirit to our need (1 Corinthians 12:7-11).
The ecclesial (‘churchy’) effect and sacramental grace (great favor of God) of the sacrament gives the recipient of it the strength and character to witness for Jesus Christ.
Confirmation in the West is administered by the Bishop to children from age 14 to 16, but generally to those graduating class of the eighth grade of school or newly-entered into high school time.
Here are some Scriptural references for Confirmation.
"Nevertheless I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you."
"Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John, who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit; for it had not yet fallen on any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. Then they laid their hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit."
"While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul passed through the upper country and came to Ephesus. There he found some disciples. And he said to them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?" And they said, "No… And Paul said, "John baptized with the baptism of repentance, telling the people to believe in the one who was to come after him, that is, Jesus." On hearing this, the people (came forward and) were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them; and they spoke with tongues and prophesied."